Daryl Morey Houston Rockets
Photo: Bill Baptist, NBAE/Getty Images

The stepping down of Daryl Morey as the General Manager of the Houston Rockets may be the result of his actions before this season even began. At least that is what CCTV, a China state broadcaster, hints at.

Although it has been reported that it was Morey’s own decision to leave the Rockets, CCTV’s comments imply that his departure is related with his tweet in support of the Hong Kong protests.

“We reiterate that any words and deeds that attempt to hurt the feelings of the Chinese people will have to pay a price,” CCTV said in a statement on its website which was also read out on air, according to Agence France-Presse of Manilla Bulletin.

The news of Morey’s resignation were very well welcomed in Chinese equivalent of Twitter called Weibo. According to Manilla Bulletin article, the hashtag “Morey resigns” had 110 million views as of Friday lunchtime and was a top-25 trending topic.

The NBA-China business relationship has been a subject of many discussions. Recently, the Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban said he is okay to do business with China when pressed by Megyn Kelly to say if he condemns human rights violations in China.